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Election guide 2010: County commission
Meadows Brant 2010
Brant Meadows - photo by Submitted

The July 20 primary features contests for two seats on the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners.

The races in Districts 1 and 3 will feature the new district-only election format approved last year by the state.

The setup, which voters supported in a July 2008 referendum, means voting for the post will be limited to residents of the particular district.

Previously, candidates had to live in their district, but were elected countywide.

District 1 includes some of Cumming and much of western Forsyth, while District 3 covers the county’s southwestern corner.

No Democrats are running in District 3, so the winner of the primary claims the seat.

District 1

Pete Amos, R
Family: Wife, Catherine; son, Slate
Education: University of Georgia, business administration and finance
Occupation: Plumber and property manager
Affiliations: Member of United Methodist Church and Rotary Club of Forsyth County
Why he’s running: “As owner of a successful small business for more than 35 years, I have experience in creating jobs, working within a budget and making payrolls. I think we need to create a community that really fosters small business growth, innovation and economic development. We also need to keep a handle on government expenses.”
Web site:

Brant Meadows, R
Family: Wife, Michele; children, Judson and Caroline
Education: Auburn University, public relations
Occupation: Small business owner
Affiliations: Forsyth County planning commissioner, United Methodist church member, National Rifle Association life member
Why he’s running: “I am a candidate for commissioner because I desire to serve the public through the experience I have gained. While serving as a planning commissioner I successfully voted to halt ridiculous densities, stopped a garbage dump next to a neighborhood and prevented a landfill next to a future water reservoir location. ... We must restore the balance between the city and county regarding sales tax splits that will ultimately keep county property taxes lower.”
Web site:

Mary Chatfield, D
Family: Single
Education: Georgia Southern College, English
Occupation: Small business owner of At Your Service
Affiliations: Many, including president of the Democratic Women, Forsyth County Democratic Party committee member, district director for 9th and 10th congressional districts in the Georgia Federation of Democratic Women, Forsyth County Newcomers and Women’s Club
Why she’s running: “I care about the community I live in and I want to continue to see it as a great place to live and work. I believe that as a woman and a Democrat, I offer a different perspective than a totally Republican and male commission. ... [If] I’m elected, to listen to the residents of District 1 and represent their views and desires on the commission.”
Web site: none

District 3

Jim Harrell, R (Incumbent)
Family: Wife, Judy; son, Bill; four grandchildren
Education: Georgia Institute of Technology, aerospace engineering
Occupation: Commissioner and small business owner
Affiliations: Member of the Forsyth County Republican Party, St. Brendan’s Catholic Church, Association County Commissioner Georgia certified
Why he’s running: “I’m running to serve the people by keeping Forsyth County the best place to live, work and play. That means that people and businesses will continue to move to this wonderful county.”
Web site:

Todd Levent, R
Family: Wife, Dana; children Jared and Alexandria
Education: Began working at a young age
Occupation: In the building industry and formerly in law enforcement
Affiliations: Youth athletics, First Redeemer Church, donates to many local community charities
Why he’s running: “Because of the poor financial situation the county’s in and how the money has been mismanaged. I believe I can do a fantastic job at getting that back under control.”
Web site:

Josh Shorr, R
Family: Wife, Stacey; daughter, Natalie
Education: Pace University School of Law
Occupation: Strategic planner
Affiliations: Lanier-Forsyth Rotary Club, Forsyth Tea Party, Forsyth County Republican Party and Conservative Leadership Coalition of Georgia
Why he’s running: “I’m running to improve the quality of life for the taxpayers of Forsyth County.”
Web site:

Mark Venco, R
Family: Wife, Lisa; sons, Luke and Matthew
Education: New York Institute of Technology, electrical engineering
Occupation: Corporate business development
Affiliations: Local youth soccer
Why he’s running: “To represent the homeowners and to apply financial due diligence to all decisions made within the Forsyth County commission.”
Web site: